Andy Murray may well be quietly fist-pumping after yesterday’s huge tournament upset saw the World No.1 bow out of the Monte Carlo Masters in just the second round.
No-one could have expected Novak Djokovic to struggle in his first match of the clay court campaign against 55th ranked Czech Jiri Vesely, but even champions encounter off days.
The Serb first caused a spectator stir when he dropped the first set 4-6, but it looked to be back to business as usual as he piled on the pressure to take the second set 6-2. As the opening set looked to be somewhat of a minor blip with Novak back on track in the second, the deciding set looked to be going one way only.
But, Vesely held his nerve for a stunning 6-4 2-6 6-4 victory on Court Ranier III, the Czech having never before beaten a player ranked in the world’s top 10. He now joins an elite club of just three other players to beat the Serb in the last 12 months: Murray, Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka.
Eleven-time Grand Slam winner Djokovic had won his past 22 matches in Masters competitions, and nine of his past 10 tournaments, but yesterday saw his first exit as early as the second round since the Madrid Masters in 2013.
Novak’s early exit could mean a whole lot to Murray, who can breathe a sigh of relief that he won’t have to face losing to the World No.1 for a fourth consecutive time just yet.
The Brit is now 9/2 for glory in Monte Carlo, and despite the small issue of potentially facing Federer or Nadal who are both 10/3 for victory on clay, the World No.2 has a much more eye-catching chance with Novak gone.
The Scot faces Benoit Paire in the next round whom he has played just the once, seeing a straight sets win last year in the Hopman Cup.
But, should you fancy more upsets in Monte Carlo you can get the Frenchman at 7/2 to send the Brit packing.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing